Even though Tropical Storm Josephine may not amount to much, forecasters are warning of a ramp-up of storm activity.
The 2020 Atlantic hurricane season is expected to go into hyperdrive within the next few weeks, forecasters predict, as several weather patterns that favor storm formation are starting to line up.
The patterns include unusually warm sea water in the Atlantic – which provides the fuel hurricanes need to develop – and weaker wind shear, which when strong can act to tear nascent storms apart, according to AccuWeather meteorologist Bernie Rayno.
Also, there's expected to be a lack of dry air and Saharan dust in the atmosphere as well as lower atmospheric pressure in the Atlantic, both of which will help tropical storms and hurricanes form.
Hurricane season forecast: On the heels of Isaias, forecasters say 10 more hurricanes are likely
In addition, there's a "robust wave train coming off of Africa," Rayno said, thanks to an active African monsoon season. Waves are the small weather disturbances that eject off Africa, which can develop into tropical storms and hurricanes.
That, coupled with the lack of El Niño in the Pacific, mean hurricane activity should accelerate in the weeks ahead. El Niños tend to suppress hurricanes in the Atlantic Basin.
“Beyond the next seven to 10 days, toward the latter part of August, we expect conditions to become less of a deterrent for tropical systems over the Atlantic,” said AccuWeather senior hurricane specialist Dan Kottlowski.
In an updated AccuWeather hurricane forecast, Kottlowski said there is a high possibility the season will become “hyperactive,” rivaling the 2005 hurricane season that ended with 28 named storms, including the infamous Hurricane Katrina.
Peak hurricane season runs mid-August through mid-October, when about 95% of hurricanes form.
So far this year, of the 10 named storms that have formed, five have affected the U.S.: Tropical Storms Bertha, Cristobal and Fay; and Hurricanes Hanna and Isaias.
Contributing: Kimberly Miller, The Palm Beach Post
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Hurricane season: 'Hyperactive' level of activity expected in August